Shiny objects

Thirsty fans have polished Cristiano Ronaldo’s bulge

Handball is illegal in soccer, and yet countless fans have still groped the crotch of the statue of Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo in Funchal, Portugal.

Related: Male fan storms the field to make out with Cristiano Ronaldo

Instagram evidence reveals that in the years since the statue was erected, the hands of horny devotees have polished the statue’s bulge — or, as Jezebel puts it, its “prominent bronze wang.”

Ronaldo and his son were on hand when the 11-foot statue, sculpted by Ricardo Madeira Veloso, was unveiled in 2014. “This is a very special moment, to have a statue of me,” the football star said at the event.

The endowment caused quite a stir at the time, with Cosmopolitan noting, “In what is either a really weird oversight or a GREAT joke, the statue has a massive penis bulge.”

And The Washington Post was just as agog, raving, “You have to see the new, um, flattering statue of Cristiano Ronaldo.”

Related: What happens when Cristiano Ronaldo is locked out of his hotel in his boxer-briefs?

Funnily enough, the statue wasn’t the first time an artist has paid special attention to the athlete’s package. Cake decorators sculpted his bulge out of frosting in 2014 to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Ronald’s underwear line, CR7.

Meanwhile, we have unconfirmed reports that rubbing the crotch of the Funchal statue bestows the admirer with good luck.